We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

Singapore, Singapore
Level Contributor
70 posts
17 reviews
Save Topic
Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

Hi All,

I and my wife will be driving from LV to LA during 4th Dec to 11th Dec. I believed that it is the start of winter season. I need advice on whether tire chains are needed for the road trip from LV to LA.

We intend to visit these places:

1. Las Vegas

2. Death Valley

3. Los Angeles

4. Santa Monica

4. San Diego

I tried to get information on the road conditions for Dec but there was not much info available.

Hope to plan a good and safe road trip from LV to LA.

Thank you all in advance.

Adelaide, Australia
Destination Expert
for Adelaide, Las Vegas, South Australia
Level Contributor
9,836 posts
1,330 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles along the I-15: you won't need tire chains

Bon voyage:)

Encinitas...
Destination Expert
for Zion National Park, Joshua Tree National Park
Level Contributor
17,505 posts
14 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

You can't put chains on a rental anyway...

A nice route is to drive thru Death Valley to Lone Pine. Stay inside DV at one of the motels.Furnace Creek,Stovepipe Wells. Maybe stay a night at Lone Pine at the base of Mt Whitney. See the Alabama Hills and the western movie museum.

Then take Hwy 395 to 14/5/405 into LA/Santa Monica. From LA to San Diego is a couple hours down I-5 along the coast.

Menifee CA
Level Contributor
1,262 posts
6 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

Weather at that time can be great, cool and sunny, but keep in mind that this is the rainy season here in California. We've had drought conditions for several years with little rain, but I believe they're forecasting El Nino conditions this year. If we get it, there's a chance for quite a bit of rain. Not meaning to put a damper on things, just a heads-up.

San Francisco...
Level Contributor
24,897 posts
Save Reply
4. Re: Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

<<<but keep in mind that this is the rainy season here in California.>>>

Also keep in mind that our rainy season is noting close to what most people that live in other parts of the US call rainy season. People in the South or midwest have a little different take on rainy season where they get as much rain in 2 days as we get in a year.

United States
Level Contributor
2,141 posts
14 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

And though early December is "slow season" in Vegas, don't drive Vegas to Los Angeles on a Sunday afternoon or a Monday morning, always a jammed drive and headaches.

Los Angeles...
Level Contributor
4,335 posts
25 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

It has been a VERY long time since there was snow in the Cajon Pass.

Malibu
Level Contributor
11,266 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

Actually spap I drove through (very light) flurries a couple years ago. It was nowhere near as heavy as the snow that closed Kanan in the hills between Agoura and Malibu.

Now Santa Monica would be a bit of an event.

Huntington Beach...
Level Contributor
3,150 posts
74 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

I agree with Encinitas That would be a nice drive with the exception of the 5 from LA,it doesn't reach the coast until almost San Diego County.Take Pacific Coast Highway(PCH) instead,it will run into the 5 near San Diego.

Malibu
Level Contributor
11,266 posts
2 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

It will take 5 hours to drive PCH from SM to SD.

405 to the 5

Huntington Beach...
Level Contributor
3,150 posts
74 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Driving from Las Vegas to Los Angeles in early Dec

I should have stated if not in a hurry!The OP is taking 7 days for the trip Dec.4-11 I don't think they are in a hurry and may enjoy the drive down the coast.